Curse of Simba (1964)

UK, 1964
61m, 5527 feet
35mm film, black and white
mono, English
Reviewed at The EOFFTV Review

A British horror film directed by Lindsay Shonteff. It’s often suggested that the film was also released under the title Voodoo Blood Death though this seems to be the result of a misunderstanding. In 1964, Variety referred to a forthcoming double bill of Frankenstein Meets the Spacemonster (1965) and Voodoo Blood Death but also stated that both films would be shot in Florida. A note in the 12 February 1964 issue states that “Iselin and Tenney, who now have a New York office are making plans to produce another fright duo in Florida, “Frankenstein Meets the Space Monster” and “Voodoo Blood Death.” Indoor scenes will be shot in a Miami studio.” An advert from Iselin-Tenney Productions in the 29 April 1964 issue gives Voodoo Blood Death the strapline “A Caribbean Holiday Turns to Nightmare” which doesn’t sound like the plot of Curse of Simba at all. From this evidence it would suggest that Voodoo Blood Death was something completely different that was later retitled – it’s very likely an early title for Del Tenney’s I Eat Your Skin (1964).

Plot Summary

Mike Stacey, an alcoholic big game hunter in Africa, bags a mystical lion sacred to a local tribe and takes the carcass back to London. The tribal chief puts a curse on Stacey who finds himself haunted by bizarre hallucinations as his friends attempt to kill him, remotely controlled by the curse. The day is saved by Stacey’s estranged wife Janet who learns that the only cure is to send Stacey back to Africa to kill the man who placed the curse on him.

Credits

* = uncredited

Crew
Director: Lindsay Shonteff
© Galaworldfilm Prods Ltd and Gordon Films Inc present a Galafilmworld-Gordon Films production [on UK prints]
© 1965 Bonville Pictures Corporation [on US prints]
Galaworldfilm Productions Ltd/Gordon Films Inc
Executive Producer: Kenneth Rive, Richard Gordon *
In Charge of Production: Fred Slark
Script: Tony O’Grady [real name: Brian Clemens]
Additional Scenes/Dialogue: Leigh Vance
Assistant Director: Bill Snaith
Director of Photography: Gerald Gibbs
Camera Operator: Brian Elvin
Editor: Barry Vince
Music Composed and Conducted by: Brian Fahey
Nightclub Music by: The Bobby Breen Quintet
Sound Recordist: Jock May
Wardrobe: Mary Gibson
Make-up: Gerry Fletcher
Art Director: Tony Inglis
Studio: Shepperton Studios
Casting Director: Ronnie Curtis

Cast
Bryant Halliday (Mike Stacey)
Dennis Price (Major Thomas)
Lisa Daniely (Janet Stacey)
Ronald Leigh-Hunt (doctor)
Mary Kerridge (Janet’s mother)
John Witty (police inspector)
Jean Lodge (Mrs Lomas)
Danny Daniels (Simbaza)
Beryl Cunningham (nightclub dancer)
Danny Daniels (Simbaza)
Dennis Alaba Peters (Saidi)
Tony Thawnton (Radlett)
Michael Nightingale (second hunter)
Louis Mahoney (African expert)
Valli Newby
Andy Meyers (Tommy Stacey)
Jimmy Feldgate (barman)
Nigel Feyistan (Simbaza in London)
Bobby Breen Quintet (night club band)

Alternative Titles

Curse of the Voodoo – USA
The Lion Man

References

Periodicals

  • Castle of Frankenstein no.10 p.6
  • The Daily Cinema no.9081 (23 June 1965) p.9 – review
  • The Dark Side no.66 p.41 – review
  • Halls of Horror no.27 p.19 – note
  • Kine Weekly no.3012 (24 June 1965) p.18 – review
  • Monthly Film Bulletin vol.32 no.378 (July 1965) p.108 – credits, synopsis, review
  • Variety 22 December 1965 – credits, review
  • Video Viewer January 1983 p.64 – review

Books

  • The Allied Artists Checklist by Len D. Martin p.35 – credits, synopsis, note
  • The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror by Phil Hardy (ed.) p.160
  • English Gothic: A Century of Horror Cinema by Jonathan Rigby pp.10, 124
  • Feature Films, 1960-1969: A Filmography of English-language and Major Foreign-language United States Releases by Harris M. Lentz III p.89
  • Hoffman’s Guide to SF, Horror and Fantasy Movies 1991-1992 p.86 – credits, review
  • The Horror Hits of Richard Gordon by Tom Weaver pp.100-119 – illustrated credits, synopsis, interview with Richard Gordon
  • Reference Guide to Fantastic Films by Walt Lee p.84 – credits
  • Sixties Shockers by Mark Clark and Bryan Senn pp.126-128
  • Uneasy Dreams: The Golden Age of British Horror Films, 1956-1976 by Gary A. Smith p.63
  • X-Cert: The British Independent Horror Film: 1951-1970 by John Hamilton pp.142-145; 232-233

Other sources

  • British National Film Catalogue vol.3 (1965) – credits, review